Winter weather can be beautiful. Especially if you like skiing, building snowmen, or drinking hot chocolate next to a warm fire. However, the damage it can cause a house is tremendous. Water and wind can quickly cause major problems. So, with that in mind…
Here are a few tips to help protect your home:
- Clean your gutters and downspouts, to ensure water is running into functional drains and away from the house. When it snows and rains, a lot of water falls on your roof and then into the gutters. Getting this water away from the house is critical for a variety of reasons. Water that spills over gutters and lands close to the foundation causes numerous problems. Water near a house often finds its way into a basement or crawl space. Structural settlement can occur due to saturated soil.
- Turn off outside hose bibs. When the temperature drops below freezing, water can split the pipes open. Most houses have interior shutoff valves that allow you to drain the water from the section of pipe that runs out in the cold where it’s prone to freezing.
- Seal up cracks in masonry and concrete. Just as water in pipes expands and breaks pipes, water that runs into cracks in masonry and concrete expands and breaks the hard materials apart. Sealing up cracks in chimneys, patios, driveways and sidewalks goes a long way in preventing damage.
- Trim branches and brush away from the house: As the wind blows, anything touching your house moves constantly and can damage the roof and siding. Also, branches hanging over the house are at risk of falling due to the wind or ice and causing damage.